US Consulate Experience

Africaida

Well-known member
Jun 19, 2009
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The good thing is.....

I just returned from my appointment at the US Consulate to replace my lost Passport. It was one of the most degrading and horrific experiences that I have encountered in my many years of traveling. I was treated with no respect and as another US Citizen stated as we waited in lines over 2 hours...they have "treated us like animals". The most shameful issue was that NO ONE spoke English, so unless you spoke Spanish, you had NO idea, where to go, what line to go in etc. Fortunately, I was helped by a Spanish speaking US Citizen who was there for a renewal. (All signs were also ONLY in Spanish NO ENGLISH)

All announcements were made only in Spanish and sometimes there were two announcements at the same time, so even if you were Spanish speaking, you could not hear either message!!

(The only English speaking person was the LAST person who actually processed the Passport)

This experience took over 4 hours!!

I would suggest that a Consulate Official actually "go through this experience" in order to rectify what is a shameful situation for the US.


Please be aware that if you do not speak Spanish, please take an interpreter with you.

In the US everything is in Spanish and English, but our own US Consulate does not offer English speaking services in the DR. Shameful!!!
You can now understand to some extent what people who happen to NOT have citizenship from "first" world country are routinely treated like.
 

dogstar

New member
Oct 24, 2004
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Usa

According how things goes in US, there should be Spanish in primary Schools, check what happened to US citizen in Spanish speaking country.

OMG nobody speaks Dutch here.

4 hours waiting? Did they lost your passport, or you did it?

Usually when you are complaining, a Dominican person will tell you that if don't like it here, and you find it so much better in your country, to go to your country then, then you would not be complaining.

In this case, as it is an embassy, they would probably tell you, to go home and find another US embassy in NY, as there must be at least few.

At least you have an embassy, my closest embassy is on Cuba. :bunny:
When you are in the US consolate, you are IN THE USA.
 

Ken

Well-known member
Jan 1, 2002
13,510
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According how things goes in US, there should be Spanish in primary Schools, check what happened to US citizen in Spanish speaking country.

OMG nobody speaks Dutch here.

4 hours waiting? Did they lost your passport, or you did it?

Usually when you are complaining, a Dominican person will tell you that if don't like it here, and you find it so much better in your country, to go to your country then, then you would not be complaining.

In this case, as it is an embassy, they would probably tell you, to go home and find another US embassy in NY, as there must be at least few.

At least you have an embassy, my closest embassy is on Cuba. :bunny:
This is a useless post.
 

La Profe_1

Well-known member
Oct 15, 2003
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I haven't been to the SD Consulate for several years, but the last time I was there the security personnel outside were horrible. They spoke no English (I do speak Spanish, btw) and required everyone to stand in line for hours.

I was accompanying a young Dominican woman who needed surgery in the US and who was applying for a visa for medical care. (We had all the proper paperwork and she got the visa, had the surgery and is now living once again in Puerto Plata.)

I was not permitted to enter the Consulate with her even though I am a US citizen and was made to stand outside waiting for her a total of 4 hours. I was not permitted to sit and finally had to cross to the other side of the street in order to be able to relax a bit.

I found the experience so distressing that I chose to go to the US to take care of Social Security issues instead of trying to do them at the Consulate.
 

Frank the Tank

New member
May 12, 2005
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They should have a separate entrance and lines for citizen services. After all US citizens should be treated better and given preference.
 

Chip

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Jul 25, 2007
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Santiago
First, the consulate does have many employees that are sufficiently bilingual and I for one don't know why few were able to help the OP.

Also, I have a good deal of experience with the consulate(petitioned my wife, declared two children, petition and renewal of passports) and I can concur that attitude is generally very unimpressive and unhelpful. Worse is the amount of misinformation that I have personally received on numerous occasions. In fact for this I generally won't speak in Spanish as I have witnessed it is only a pretext to be abused. I have asked to speak with a supervisor more than once in English and my problem is always resolved relatively quickly. In a nutshell, apparently many of the Dominicans that work there think they are the "last coke available in the desert" and treat their fellow countrymen with contempt. Certainly, many that do petition visas maybe have ulterior motives but the aforementioned attitude is unprofessional to say the least compared with the immigration officials in the Miami airport or Orlando.
 

Chip

New member
Jul 25, 2007
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Santiago
interesting post chip. i believe my "perceived social levels" thread might explain what is going on (see the relationship between dom yorks and expats):

http://www.dr1.com/forums/dominicans-abroad/105473-perceived-social-levels.html
Interesting, but I don't believe most of the employees that are bilingual lived in the US as their English isn't good enough. At any rate my own personal example is that a Dom York treated me better than a local girls, especially after I told her in English what I thought of them making my process difficult.
 

Ken

Well-known member
Jan 1, 2002
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Worse is the amount of misinformation that I have personally received on numerous occasions.
I started the process to go on Social Security with the Consulate employee who handles that matter. Because I acted in accordance with the information given by her, I actually began to receive SS benefits 6 months after when they would have started had I been given correct information. I made up for the loss over time, but those 6 months were tough because receiving those benefits had been calculated in our planning.
 

North coast newbie

New member
Jul 30, 2006
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I had my passport renewed at the consulars office in POP. No line, I was the only one there. I was greeted by a very pleasant bilinguar woman. Batta bing, new passport. No unpleasantries. It might be worth the effort to travel to Puerta Plata if SD is really as bad as described.
 

rafael

New member
Jan 2, 2002
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www.dr-tourist.tv
Regarding the OP I find it extremely unusual that US Citizens are being mistreated as if they were locals at the US consulate. That's not acceptable.

I was not crazy about my trip to the consulate either. I did not lsoe my passport, it was stolen when my apt was broken into. When I was able to finally talk to the american lady working in the inner sanctum, she was VERY helpful. I had zero other forms of ID and had a new passort in less than an hour. The stolen passport was issued in SD so I am sure that helped.

However, before you get to the inner sanctum. . .you have ONE line to wait on. Standing up, in the hot morning sun. I had sun burn the day I went and this was a nightmare. Dominicans don't wait on lines and it was the usual chaos.

I don't get why the large amount of dominicans, who may or may not be trying to commit fraud to get a visa were all:

1- sitting down, while I was forced to stand
2- had fans to cool them off even though they were under an awning and I was in the hot sun
3- had big screen TVs to watch

Without a doubt the locals get treated better until we get to speak to an american and even then you may get unlucky and get a real POS to take care of you. I was lucky in that instance.